Here we go, Puxi friends! Tonight's the night. It's lockdown time. Countdown to 3am. It's like the exact opposite of New Year's Eve, isn't it?
Who would have thought they could invent the exact opposite of New Year's Eve...
But the bastards went ahead and did it.
Stuck in our apartments during these difficult lockdown times, our minds are preoccupied with a single yearning, nagging, agonizing question that comes back around again and again and again, as we await our reprieve from this static and hellish existence:
"What in the sweet heavens am I supposed to do with myself today??!?"
SmartShanghai to the rescue, y'all! Here we are with five incredibly practical, really level-headed, not at all a cry-for-help apartment activities to get you though your lockdown.
Lockdown Activity #1: Masterpiece Cat Theater
If you live in China, you, of course, have a street cat that you've adopted. They pretty much hand them out to you when you get off the plane at the airport, like, here take care of THIS for several decades if you don't mind. If your cat is anything like mine, they love to dress up in lil' cat costumes and re-enact the greatest and most cherished theatre pieces from the Western pantheon.
THEY LOVE IT.
I have two cats. One is called Emily and one called is Charlotte. Emily is the star of the show. She's a little diva and is pictured here in some of her best and most affecting roles. On the other hand, I found Charlotte's acting quite rote and one dimensional and so she was demoted to understudy and roundly shamed for her lack of talent. Not pictured.
Here's Emily in a delightful little jape called "Sherlock Holmes and the Disappearance of Lady Furfax Gingerfellows".
"Watson! The game is afoot!"
All the costumes are sourced from Taobao which afforded me the circumstance to send the text message I am most proud of in my life:
"Hullo there. I bought the little tweed suit for my cat. Are the little cat spectacles included in the little tweed cat suit package?"
Oh, look, it's Emily again, or should I say "Icekitty".
"They call her ‘Icekitty' because she flies ice cold. No mistakes."
Emily, you can be my wingkitty, anytime.
You know, a lot of people think Top Gun is a really great F-16 fighter jet movie with a beach volleyball scene in it. But it's actually a really great beach volleyball movie with a bunch of unnecessary F-16 fighter jet scenes in it. Trust me on this. I've looked at the material with a directors eye.
The mis en scene is my coffee table pushed up against my TV with lil' drapes on the sides to look like stage curtains. Images are sourced from the Google. The candles were stolen from Dada bar.
Here's the collaboration I'm most excited about. We're getting rave reviews for this. Plenty of awards buzz. It's a period piece. It's British.
Prepare for REIGN, ladies and gentlemen. It's...
"Lust and Murder in the Court of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn"
Love. Power. Betrayal. Greed. Treachery. Sex. Obsession. Catnip.
Lockdown Activity #2: Yoga but EFF'ING HAMMERED
If you're looking for a great way to stay active and fit during lockdown, I've developed a really fun yoga system that combines the best practices and techniques from several different yoga schools with seriously shitloads of alcohol, and the best part is, you can do it in your very own home.
As you know, the term "yoga" in the Western world often denotes a modern form of Hatha yoga and a posture-based physical fitness, stress-relief and relaxation technique, consisting largely of the asanas; this differs from traditional yoga, which focuses on meditation and release from worldly attachments.
So, it's like that and at the same time consuming all the alcohol in the immediate vicinity like a fucking champion. Hang on, gimme a sec, let me rip out a Bhujangasana one time.
"The Cobra Pose", y'all. Feel it. Hisss!
Staying fit with yoga and alcohol is really the process of ‘creating your own calm.' A greater yogi than I once opined "Yoga is a mirror to look at ourselves...
So, the thinking here is yeah, but shitloads of booze does that too, come on now. Let's be honest with ourselves.
If not now, then when.
Lockdown Activity #3: Build a Cardboard Box Robot Head and That's Pretty Much It
Thought I would get more mileage out of this idea but I stand by it at the same. This is just hanging out wearing a kinda sweet Cardboard Box Robot Head that I made.
Yeah, just made it out of a cardboard box.
And now it's on my head.
And now I'm playing PlayStation.
Hey, yeah, they're not all Michelin five star ideas. They're not all barn burners. Sometimes you just gotta go with it.
Let's see your list if you wanna complain!
Lockdown Activity #4: Oh, here we GO: Build a blanket fort! (!!!!!!)
Gotta calm down for a minute or I'm going to break the "!" key on my keyboard.
So, what we have here is a pretty tricked out but still very classic blanket fort, done very much in the Bedouin style. It's got bedroom and living room, with outdoor seating and a stoop. Strictly no dickheads allowed.
No wiggle room on the dickheads policy.
The thinking here is that, you know how the Inuit build igloos to ride out the winter?
For lockdown, you gotta build a blanket fort to ride out THE SUCK.
But, yeah, kicking back in my blanket fort, I came up with a pretty good idea. Why don't I just keep building extensions and add-ons to it? Like, expand it out the front door maybe. Maybe into the elevator. Maybe even past the baoans and out the goddam building!
Gonna Winchester House my way to freedom, y'all!
Can you imagine.
I believe a quote from Sun Tzu's "Art of War" would be fitting right about now:
"Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt."
Lockdown Activity #5: Volunteer on the Front Lines
In times of difficulty and uncertainty, I feel we all have to come together as a community and work as one. Each of us needs to heed the call and step up with our individual talents and abilities, working in unison to overcome challenges and adversity. It's just the only way to get through this. It just is.
Some of us are leaders. Some of us are healers. Some of us can keep the peace.
Some of us own near 100% movie accurate Gandalf outfits, who just also happens to be literature's leading authority figure on places in which YOU. SHALL. NOT. PASS.
So, yeah, just doing my part at the gate of my building here, as a servant of the Secret Fire, wielder of the Flame of Anor, making sure people...
...shall not pass.
Sorry, bud! I can't let you in! The dark fire will not avail you!
They're like: "But I just want to walk my dog!"
I'm all: "FOUL BEAST! GO BACK TO THE SHADOWWWWW!"
Seems like a good way to end this list. Just a movie reference joke to a movie that came out like 15 years ago. Ayyy, still got it.
Hey. It's a fine line between sanity and like... y'know, not sanity or whatever. Sometimes you've just gotta hold on to the things you know, right.
Stay real, Shanghai! Stay safe! Whatever you get up to your apartments and shit!
See you on the other side.
Look to my coming at first light on the fifth day.
At dawn, look to the east!